BSN Sports Swim Team of the Week: Lakeside Aquatic Club

Founded in 1982, the Lakeside Aquatic Club of Flower Mound, Texas, is a USA Swimming Gold Medal Club that’s been rising to national prominence over the past few years. The club serves over 1,200 swimmers in North Texas at three different locations and won first place in 2016 and 2018 at the USA Swimming Future Championships.

In recent years, LAC has seen swimmers continue to compete at the NCAA level, including top recruits Lauren Pitzer (Stanford) and Alex Zettle (Texas).

Head coach Jason Walter has been with LAC since 2007, and took over as head coach in 2011. BSN Sports Team Ambassador Jessica Hardy spoke with Walter to get his insight into what makes LAC special.

Walter describes his coaching philosophy as, “Inspiring swimmers to reach their full potential through mental toughness, focus and hard training.”

While LAC has had its share of elite athletes, Walter and the rest of the staff knows that making sure every swimmer gets the attention that they deserve is a key part of successful team chemistry.

Understanding your egos & allowing people to be who they are. One person does not make a team. The collective whole makes a team & that competition is not competing against somebody but competing with them. We try to beat each other in a positive way, so when we go and compete against everybody else we all have the same thought process.

Undoubtedly, it can be difficult at times to make sure every swimmers get way they need, but the LAC staff is dedicated to helping make sure that every swimmer can reach their full potential.

I feel that it’s our job as national-level high school coaches to teach our swimmers to reach their full potential with whatever training we’re doing. It’s the coach’s responsibility to make sure that that swimmer reaches their potential in the moment but has more to improve in college. I feel like coaching in the present is the most important thing. If kids want to be successful later on, if they learn how to reach their potential in the present moment, they will be successful in anything they do in life.

Just as Lakeside has grown in size and prominence over the past decade or so, Walter feels like he’s grown as a coach.

I’ve grown a whole lot. I feel like there’s 3 sides to a coach. Your understating of the sport, the work with athletes, and the communication between you and your athletes. I’ve grown in all 3 areas & how those areas intermix with each other. Because I don’t believe there’s 1 specific way of training or telling kids of how to do it. The secret in the sauce is how you teach and train swimmers and get them to buy into what you’re doing. Once you do that, it’s up to the athletes to perform at the level they need to perform at.

One of most pivotal moments for Lakeside came at the 2016 Futures Championships, which Walter identified as his favorite coaching memory so far.

It was a big transition for our team at the national level. We won our meet for the 1sttime. Our swimmers from all of our sites swam so great, and to see their mental toughness & focus was awesome. It was like 8 years of planning and preparation came together. One of the most fun meets I’ve ever been a part of.


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